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GETTING MARRIED FROM JANUARY 2020 ONWARDS

GETTING MARRIED FROM JANUARY 2020 ONWARDS

Hi Brides, it’s THAT time again!
What time? TRUNK SHOW TIME!
THIS IS FOR ALL BRIDES GETTING MARRIED FROM JANUARY 2020 ONWARDS!
WHAT: The Accapella Bridal Martina Liana and Essense of Australia Trunk Show
WHEN: JULY 12th -14th
WHERE: Accapella Bridal Boutique, Wollongong

 

 

Got to the Trunk Show Tab on our website to book your appointment.
This is your chance to see what designs I will be stocking in 2020. It also helps me to choose my stock because seeing it on ‘normal’ brides (rather than models) allows me to choose the best designs for real-life.
I’m excited to have Martina Liana designs being showcased as they have a new designer on the team.
Connie
 

WARNING Don't buy too early

WARNING Don't buy too early

WARNING!!!!
This bride came to one of my Trunk Shows last year, where I mentioned to her that it was still far too early to buy her dress. I told her that she had until this time next year to decide - that time is now closing in.
However, the bride was excited about being engaged, and bought her dress from another boutique that didn’t warn her of the perils of early dress purchase.
She has now had second thoughts about whether the design suits her figure.
She contacted me after seeing that I was holding an end of season sale, and came in for a consult. As I was doing the consultation, she explained that she had bought a dress but wasn’t as sure about it any more. I smiled and asked if she bought it a while ago, and she admitted she had.
She detailed the dress design to me, and as soon as she said ‘frills’ I thought to myself about how much that would visually shorten her. Don’t get me wrong - frills are GORGEOUS - but on a shorter size 18, it will just make your figure look stumpy.
I took a photo of her in my $500 Sale dress and we compared the dresses side by side. It’s easy to see what dress is a better option for my bride.
I said to her ‘don’t you follow me on facebook?! Haven’t you read all the blog posts I’ve made about this exact situation?!’ She laughed and said ‘I’ve made exactly the same mistake!’
Alls well that ends well, though. She’s found a dress that makes her look 10 kilos lighter and for only $500!
Connie xo
 

AUTUMN SALE

AUTUMN SALE

AUTUMN SALE!
Brides, it’s that time of the year again - when I discount my discontinued stock to make way for new designs that arrive just prior to Spring.
This is the perfect chance for brides on a budget to secure a well structured and high quality gown. All my sample gowns are well cared for and cleaned, and ready for any needed alterations to fit you perfectly.
Dresses come in all shapes and designs and are sized from 6 - 18
Best of all, brides...there’s nothing over $500!
Call the boutique to make an appointment to view the range.

Ending 25th May 2019

Connie xo

 

Barcelona Bridal Fashion Week

Barcelona Bridal Fashion Week

Well, that’s a wrap for Barcelona Bridal Fashion Week!

It was one of the biggest expos held this year, with a large number of exhibitors displaying their collections across two vast halls. I had quite a few pre-booked appointments this year - before I left I checked out all the designers and spent a lot of time looking at their websites and photographed collections to determine what I was missing in my boutique, what I was personally drawn to, and what stood out as more unique and less commercial looking.
Surprisingly, some of the photos looked great but seeing them in real life made me think ‘Wow, that’s it? That’s a little disappointing!’ It goes to show brides, when you come in with all the photos on your phone, they don’t necessarily look like that in real life.
Also, I was happy to be meeting the designers and so pleased with how accepting they were with changing some of my sample dress purchases - adding boning, removing ‘sparkle tulle’ and improving finishes to a level I would approve of for my gowns. In all honesty, they probably thought, ‘OH GOD, she’s impossible!’ but I explained I need to be happy with my the product I am selling, as I’m also selling my seamstress experience and knowledge. A fair few commented that they knew this already by reviewing my website when I enquired about an appointment.
Overall, it was a really successful and enjoyable trip, albeit so busy. I hope you guys enjoyed the overload of sneaky peeks on my news feed.

Connie xo

 

Barcelona Bridal Fashion Week 2019

Barcelona Bridal Fashion Week 2019

I am starting to prepare to go to Barcelona for Bridal Fashion week at the end of the month. It is time that I start to look at what I’m missing in my store so that I have an idea of what gowns I would like to buy while I am over there.
When I first started the boutique in 2012 I bravely chose to stock a wonderful international designer that had very unique but beautiful designs. The gowns all had sheer bodices, and at that stage many of the brides that came for a consult had never seen a sheer bodice, and couldn’t get their head around wearing ‘so little’ in public. Sheer bodices had been EVERYWHERE on the international bridal catwalk that year, but I ended up having to sell them at a discount price to the more outrageous brides that wanted something different to the usual bridal gown. In 2015 the trend finally hit in Australia and all the brides started to ask after this sheer design detail! I’m not sure if it’s because of our more isolated location, or just how the market works, but in Australia, we are so delayed in when we receive designs. We are also not as confident to wear a gown that is different to the dresses that are popular at that time. Many brides come into my store with photos of friends on their phone, saying ‘I’d like something similar...’ It’s very different in Europe, where brides are constantly trying to out-do each other with wilder designs!
There was more variety when I did made to measure, all those years ago. I would get that ‘different’ bride, wanting a red or black dress, extravagant collars and sleeves, trains metres in length... Brides were confident and eager to wear something unique.
So, if I suggest you try on a dress that is a design that you haven’t seen before, give it a whirl. If it looks great, all the more reason to wear it! Be your own style and stand out from all the other brides.
 

Bridal Appointments

Bridal Appointments

Good morning, Brides,
I've had a bit of confusion over appointments the last few weeks. As most of you know, your consultation at Accapella Bridal Boutique is by appointment only. This allows me to offer you my full and undivided attention, gives you the privacy to try on dresses you wouldn't otherwise feel comfortable with, and gives you the full 'run' of the shop floor. I work this way because it benefits YOU. Unlike many bridal stores, I do not require a deposit for your appointment time, as I do not wish you to feel pressured to rebate that cost against a dress if I don't have any styles you like.
Mid-week appointments are easy to get, and I don't confirm these by email or text. If you need to cancel last minute, that's fine - I always have alterations to do during the week.
Saturday appointments are confirmed via text message on the Thursday or Friday immediately prior to your appointment. There is a long waitlist of brides eager to secure those appointments that become available or remain unconfirmed by 7pm on Friday night.
If you have confirmed 'yes' and a true emergency arises and you are not able to make your appointment, please let me know as early as possible so that I may pass your appointment onto one of our local waitlisted brides. Those brides who simply do not turn up and make no attempt to contact the store (before OR after their allotted appointment time) will need to make subsequent appointments for the less in-demand weekday availabilities.
 

Something special about small businesses

Something special about small businesses

There is something really special about small businesses.
I met a lovely bride the other day. She tried a dress on - loved it - and then decided she’d better try on a few more, just in case.
But time an again, she came back to that first dress!
Her mum said, “it’s a bit like my wedding dress story! I saw a gown in the dress shop window, but the sales assistant wouldn’t take it down so I could try it on. She told me to come back the following week when the display was due to be changed. I went back, and I STILL loved the dress.’
Her daughter couldn’t believe that she was denied the right to try on the dress. Her mother and I had a good laugh - can you imagine telling a bride these days that she couldn’t try on something in stock?!
Social media is a really great tool - I can use it to pass on my advice and to easily let you know when I have sales and Trunk Shows. But it is also a burden - it is too easy for clients to leave ‘keyboard warrior’ negative reviews without needing to actual deal with issues face to face. Imagine the fallout if I told a bride to come back next week because I couldn’t ruin my display just for her.
Let’s work together to use social media to its full potential as a positive business tool. I’m always answering messages and emails late at night and early in the morning, and I do my very best to provide after hours appointments when necessary. Social media, text messages and emails make this possible!
 

Essense of Australia Mikado gown

Essense of Australia Mikado gown

So excited about this Essense of Australia Mikado gown! This lovely woman is a bridal size 24 and has a DD cup bust. She already dresses beautifully and embraces her curvaceous figure. I love the asymmetrical pleats on this bodice - they are very flattering to the waist and bust and accentuate her womanly shape while still draping gently. The fabric choice and internal structure means the bride can get away without a bra, so she can keep the spaghetti straps that make this dress so modern and sexy. The skirt has a single sewn pleat on each side, which again allows the fabric to drape gently across the tummy area. Although it’s a simple design, in this case less is definitely more as the structure and simplicity is what makes this dress perfect.  

Tropical destination wedding

Tropical destination wedding

Alteration of the week
This bride had a tropical destination wedding She didn’t want a formal wedding gown but still wanted to feel like a bride. As with most destination weddings, her dress had to be lightweight and cool, travel well without creasing too much, and suit the more casual themed wedding venue.
This dress was perfect. The cotton lace is much cooler in the heat compared to synthetic fibres, and is more robust for travelling. The dress is only lightly lined, and the style more suited to a casual reception.
The only issue was that the bride's hips are quite narrow and her torso short - this meant that the bodice seam was falling underneath her hip-line and the bottom half of the dress looked like a sack. To rectify this I raised the skirt of the dress at the bottom of the bodice, bringing the line up and adding in a stronger curve to the horizontal seam. This meant the gathered section of the skirt flared at the hips, and the seam created a visual illusion of curves.

 

Dress is a design by Besides Couture. These dresses are beautiful budget options, and are all under $2000.

 

Connie

 

loss of a daughter

loss of a daughter

January is always a busy month for bridal stores. Many brides are starting their dress search after getting engaged over Christmas, while others are finalising their choices, ready for their 2019 weddings.
I’ve been speaking to a lot of my brides lately, and I’ve got to say how privileged I feel to have had the opportunity to work as a made to measure seamstress in my early bridal couture career. This experience didn’t just give me a great grounding in the skills needed to be a successful seamstress, it also allowed me to participate in the Big Day with my clients - traditionally, the seamstress attended the morning of the wedding to deliver the gown and dress the bride and her bridesmaids and flower girls.
These were usually very traditional affairs, and one thing that always stood out for me was the bride’s packed suitcase standing in the hall, waiting for the driver to take her to her new husband, waiting at the church.
This suitcase symbolised many things. The loss of a daughter who had rarely slept away from home, the loss of a sister - and sometimes the little sister’s excitement at finally having her own room! And the beginning of a new, grown-up life with her loved one. Bittersweet.
My modern brides can’t imagine a time when they may have been going off to marry a man they had never lived with. But their mothers and grandmothers still remember!
 

surprise pregnancy announcement

surprise pregnancy announcement

Oh my GOSH, Ladies!
We are only half way through January and I have already had three brides call to tell me they have surprise pregnancy announcements!
All very lovely and happy news - I am thrilled for them.
But unexpected pregnancies cause a lot of problems with dress fittings, both before and after the baby is born. First trimester bloating, growing busts, healthy weight-gain, burgeoning bellies! And even if you bounce back to pre-pregnancy weight quickly, bodies are rarely the same shape after growing new life!
So, unless you’re prepared for the added expense of extensive alterations, or even the cost of a whole new dress, maybe keep your knickers on! LOL 🙈
 

Large bust was escaping

Large bust was escaping

This bride chose the Martina Liana 873 design. It is a gorgeous embroidered lace gown with a high neckline at front and a cut-away racerback designed bodice. She loved the dress, but her large bust was escaping a little at the armholes. Despite this, the dress actually provided great support and suited her figure very well, which is unusual for a high neck dress and larger bust.
I ordered a book-matched pair of lace edging pieces and sewed these to the armhole. This gave us additional coverage where it was needed and was completely invisible. Sometimes it can be such a small effort to see a big change in the way a dress fits!
 

Dangers of not buying the right size.

Dangers of not buying the right size.

This bride bought her dress with the intention of losing weight. A new medical condition meant that things didn’t quite work out as we had both hoped. As her wedding got closer I was emailing her to see where she was at and if I could assist at all. I was getting anxious about how much time we had left, so I asked her if could purchase the satin and lace which I would need to alter her dress. At this late stage it was too late to order a bigger size.  

Tropical Wedding

Tropical Wedding

This bride had a tropical destination wedding She didn’t want a formal wedding gown but still wanted to feel like a bride. As with most destination weddings, her dress had to be lightweight and cool, travel well without creasing too much, and suit the more casual themed wedding venue.

This dress was perfect. The cotton lace is much cooler in the heat compared to synthetic fibres, and is more robust for travelling. The dress is only lightly lined, and the style more suited to a casual reception.
The only issue was that the bride's hips are quite narrow and her torso short - this meant that the bodice seam was falling underneath her hip-line and the bottom half of the dress looked like a sack. To rectify this I raised the skirt of the dress at the bottom of the bodice, bringing the line up and adding in a stronger curve to the horizontal seam. This meant the gathered section of the skirt flared at the hips, and the seam created a visual illusion of curves.

 

Connie xo

 

Only one dress for you

Only one dress for you

This bride visited the store three times before finally deciding to purchase a dress from me. She also visited a bunch of boutiques in Sydney and sent me a text on her trip home after yet another unsuccessful day dress shopping.

I invited her back for another consultation, but told her I only had one dress that I was willing to sell her!
The dress in question is beautiful - a heavy laced Gemy Maalouf with a structural peplum skirt and v neckline.
I absolutely loved the dress on this bride - the neckline complimented her larger bust and the peplum gave her hips and defined her waist. Both design details worked together to balance a larger top half of an inverted triangle body shape.
This dress style wasn’t what the bride was expecting to purchase, but it quickly became clear that it was still the perfect dress for HER.
We took these photos at her final fitting - she looks absolutely fabulous in it!

 

Connie xo

 

Design changes Martina Liana

Design changes Martina Liana

Hi New Brides.

I've written before about how Martina Liana designers are happy to incorporate changes to their designs if you provide reliable measurements and drawings of your desired changes. I find it an easy process, because I can take measurements and photographs, and just a few days later I get an email confirming the changes or asking for further clarification.
Martina Liana are very accommodating with the required changes, additional charges apply  
 
Connie xo
 

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